Charles Bukowski

What matters most is how well you walk through the fire

– Charles Bukowski

13275

born in Andernach, Germany August 16, 1920
died: March 09, 1994
gender: male
genre: Fiction, Contemporary, Poetry
influences: John Fante, Louis-Ferdinand Céline, Knut Hamsun, Ernest Hemingway

Henry Charles Bukowski (born as Heinrich Karl Bukowski) was a German-born American poet, novelist and short story writer. His writing was influenced by the social, cultural and economic ambience of his home city of Los Angeles. It is marked by an emphasis on the ordinary lives of poor Americans, the act of writing, alcohol, relationships with women and the drudgery of work. Bukowski wrote thousands of poems, hundreds of short stories and six novels, eventually publishing over sixty books

Charles Bukowski was the only child of an American soldier and a German mother. At the age of three, he came with his family to the United States and grew up in Los Angeles. He attended Los Angeles City College from 1939 to 1941, then left school and moved to New York City to become a writer. His lack of publishing success at this time caused him to give up writing in 1946 and spurred a ten-year stint of heavy drinking. After he developed a bleeding ulcer, he decided to take up writing again. He worked a wide range of jobs to support his writing, including dishwasher, truck driver and loader, mail carrier, guard, gas station attendant, stock boy, warehouse worker, shipping clerk, post office clerk, parking lot attendant, Red Cross orderly, and elevator operator. He also worked in a dog biscuit factory, a slaughterhouse, a cake and cookie factory and he hung posters in New York City subways.

Bukowski published his first story when he was twenty-four and began writing poetry at the age of thirty-five. His first book of poetry was published in 1959; he went on to publish more than forty-five books of poetry and prose, including Pulp (1994), Screams from the Balcony (1993) and The Last Night of the Earth Poems (1992).

He died of leukemia in San Pedro on March 9, 1994

http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/13275.Charles_Bukowski

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14 thoughts on “Charles Bukowski

  1. August 16, 1920: Bukowski was born in Germany, 93 years ago today.

  2. Bukowski writes so authentically that it makes most of us flinch when we find ourselves in his stories.

  3. …or deal with the professor…

  4. Sorry, fire and I don’t get along well.

  5. Never read Bulowski and at my age probably never will. I respect all that he contributed.

    • He is rather provocative! 🙂
      “If you’re going to try, go all the way. Otherwise, don’t even start. This could mean losing girlfriends, wives, relatives and maybe even your mind. It could mean not eating for three or four days. It could mean freezing on a park bench. It could mean jail. It could mean derision. It could mean mockery–isolation. Isolation is the gift. All the others are a test of your endurance, of how much you really want to do it. And, you’ll do it, despite rejection and the worst odds. And it will be better than anything else you can imagine. If you’re going to try, go all the way. There is no other feeling like that. You will be alone with the gods, and the nights will flame with fire. You will ride life straight to perfect laughter. It’s the only good fight there is.”
      ― Charles Bukowski, Factotum

  6. […] Charles Bukowski (poet4justicedotwordpressdotcom.wordpress.com) […]

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